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Everything You Need to Know About Expanding Your LinkedIn Network

Personally, I think that everyone—job seekers and those happily in their forever careers—should keep an ear to the ground, so to speak. It’s always a good thing to know what’s going on in your industry. LinkedIn is a great way to keep up on the latest advances in your field, meet others in the industry, and even sniff out potential new opportunities that arise.



Did you know??


LinkedIn has more than 900 million members in more than 200 countries and territories worldwide. That’s a lot of potential connections!


But as with any professional setting, there are rules and etiquette involved.


5 Tips and Tricks


The Harvard Business Review says there are five common mistakes people make when reaching out via LinkedIn. To combat them they remind users to:

  1. Know what you want and why you’re reaching out before you hit "send".

  2. Think of others and not just your own needs in interactions.

  3. Want a reply? A weak, boring message probably won't do - provide some substance.

  4. Social cues still apply - avoid awkward, overly familiar, or annoying contact attempts.

  5. Confidence is key to your best chance at new connections!

For Those Needing Actionable Advice


If you’re reaching out about career advice or job search info, be clear about what you’re asking. Most working professionals check LinkedIn for short bursts of time. Be clear, concise, and actionable in your requests. Also, don’t expect your connection to know all the answers or sit for hours crafting a lengthy reply. Unfortunately, this isn't the platform for those kinds of solutions. A phone call or video chat may be better suited if you have multiple questions or questions requiring a lengthy response.


Job Search Questions


When asking about a job posting or company’s hiring process, mention the exact position and see if someone on staff will direct you to a recruiter dealing with that role. Don’t just fire off a million messages to every recruiter linked to that company. That’s a surefire way to get ignored! Recruiters receive a high amount of messages on a regular basis. Some of these are legitimate inquiries, but many are spam or generic "do you have a job for me questions". If you have a question about a specific role it's best to email the company or ask for the recruiter most familiar with the role you are interested in.


On that note...do not send "Do you have any roles that would fit my skill set?" to a recruiter. DO. NOT. It goes over like a lead balloon. Listen, recruiters LOVE helping people, but even more they love people who know how to help themselves first. Sending a generic message like this implies that a recruiter understands your skillset, your background, and your areas of expertise. There is no way for your LinkedIn to convey these details on the level that recruiters need to be able to determine a role that is the best fit.


Instead, review the open positions and determine roles that you would be the best fit for based on your knowledge of yourself. Reach out to recruiters with questions about the job posting for the role. Try some questions like these!

  • When are you expecting this posting to close?

  • This job post suggests a technical skill in X, would a technical skill in Y be considered comparable for this role?

  • I see that this role manages team members, can you tell me the size of the team to be managed?

Networking


LinkedIn offers plenty of ways to grow your network.


Top of the list?? Complete your profile.

Their analytics show that complete pages get 30% more views. And don't forget to post content to your page! Your connections want to know what you are doing professionally, ways that you are impacting your field, and how they can best support your efforts. Share relevant articles, post thoughts on current issues, and update your resume as details change. Even little things like responding to post comments and forwarding interesting tidbits can help. They tidily offer a list of the latest and greatest features just in case you’ve missed one over the years.


Bonus!

This ups the views and increases overall engagement of your page - win, win!


Growing A Small Business?


Are you a small business owner wanting to grow?


  • Encourage your employees to get involved by tagging the company’s homepage.

  • Get customers to shout out their success stories.

  • Invite your personal connections to follow your business.

  • Link to community events you attend or activities you’ve sponsored.

  • Place a LinkedIn follow button on your external website along with social media links.

Getting your name out there, even electronically, is always a plus!


These days there aren’t many free, accessible ways for job seekers to rub elbows with Fortune 500 CEO’s. And while LinkedIn isn’t face-to-face, it’s a pretty good start when starting, building, or advertising job-related information.


While you're at it, I'd love to connect with you on LinkedIn!


I would love to see what you are up to in your chosen career field!

 

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